Last Sunday, I talked about why fulfilling a career in the visual arts is the Mt. Olympus climb that it seems to be, and why I feel so passionate about artists bringing their visions into the ever-expanding light of human consciousness.
Which, of course, brings up the question about what holds artists back from bringing their visions into the ever-expanding light of human consciousness.
I know from experience how easy, and almost automatic, it is to focus on what seems to be … impacting us from the external world.
If we were just better at marketing, better at business, better at knowing who are collectors are, better at time management, better at money management, better at selling, better at mingling and networking.
And that’s not to say that becoming skillful, wherever we need to, isn’t at play here. It is. It’s just not the primary mover for what’s holding us back.
We are. We are the primary movers of our lives.
Each choice we make, based on each assumption we’ve fallen into, based on earnest research, based on our inherent biases (conditioning) – these are the dynamics that unfold before us day by day.
We can either remain oblivious to this internal play of forces, or we can become intentionally awake and aware.
We can push against the natural current of our own life, or we can choose to go with the same flow we experience when we create.
And sometimes, if your life is anything like mine, we alternate – days of grace with days weighted down by whatever is haunting us in the moment.
One way to help navigate the organic shifts between grace and struggle is to outline the core principles that will help you see more clearly where the gap is between the grace you want, and the struggle you are living.
Even A Manifesto Needs A North Star
Being a philosophy major, at one point in my academic career, I heard the phrase “seeking the meaning of life” over and over and over.
And even though my brain understood the words and their literal meaning, the sense of it never made sense to me.
It was as if some unnamed authority had decided that seeking the meaning of life was the operative motivation for human beings.
My problem was that “meaning” was a mental construct and “life” was an experiential reality. You don’t live meaning. And you don’t mean living.
Unable to come up with anything better, my solution was to ignore the idea.
And then I heard a fantastic conversation between Bill Moyers and Joseph Campbell, the professor who had written extensively on mythology and it’s application to understanding our contemporary human condition.
I remember jumping up from my seat, shouting, “Yes! Yes! Yes!” and grabbing a piece of paper to write it down.
It is not the meaning of life we are seeking, Joseph Campbell said as he leaned forward to get closer to Bill Moyers, but the experience of being alive.
I remember the stunned pause in the conversation as Bill Moyer’s took this in, smiled, and instantly turned the conversation down this new road of awareness.
This single quote guided me through graduate school, and became the key quote in my final dissertation on adolescent creativity (because, if any one would understand this quote from the inside out, it would be teenagers!).
Now, this quote has become the North Star for my new Manifesto For Visual Fine Artists.
The Manifesto Is Ready!
I’ve set up this new, Sunday Series of Blog Posts to tease out sections of the manifesto so together we can illuminate, ruminate, and expand on the ideas in the manifesto.
Only… I can’t do it alone.
I need you, my intrepid artists, to come to the party with me.
I believe, in the marrow of my bones, that visual fine artists are critical to the evolution of our creative, collective consciousness.
That when we step fully into our individual creative flow, humanity as whole steps into it’s collective, creative flow.
And this feeds back into us as individuals. It’s an infinity loop of human creativity.
But only if we are awake to the conditioning that is holding us back and aware of what will move us forward.
This is where the principles in the manifesto come in.
If you would like a copy of the entire Manifesto For Visual Fine Artists, click here.
Then, after you download and read it (it’s short!) I want to hear about the principles you believe will take you closer and closer to the visionary summit of the truth and power in your art.
So, please… Tell me. Come comment!
The Next Step
I have been coaching visual artists on their career path to Visionary Affluence since 2004.
That’s the ten-year minimum it takes to master any skill—not to say I’ve actually mastered anything. Just letting you know I have logged the 10,000 hours it takes to run fast enough, flap your wings hard enough, and leap high enough to discover whether or not you can fly.
And what I can tell you is how remarkable the view is from 10,000 hours above the creative landscape. I can spot enclaves of my artists as they sit ‘round mythical campfires at different levels of the Mt. Olympus climb to their dreams.
Leaning into the smell of a wood fire, these artists – intrepid visionaries every one – share their experiences with each other. A hawk cries out and circles overhead as the mountain range frames a bold streak of sunset sky deepening to blood red.
I invite you to join your fellow artists, and me, under the emerging stars of your own visions, where the expansive beauty of the horizon calls out, the fire is warm, and the truth of your heart is irresistible!
Your Truth – Your Power – Your Art
And I’ll keep you posted on the exciting new events, webinars, trainings, books, and successful artist interviews I’m mapping out as we climb this dream summit together.